Last week it became known that the US will soon open its doors to foreign travelers vaccinated against coronavirus. For the first time since the outbreak of the pandemic, the United States will ease restrictions on a wide range of travelers from around the world.
However, the new rules, which come into force on November 1, do not apply to all vaccinated citizens. These rules exclude millions of those people who received two doses of the Russian Sputnik V vaccine.
First of all, hundreds of thousands of Russians suffered. According to the US Travel Association, in 2019 (the latest year for which data are available) about 300,000 Russians visited the US. This despite difficult diplomatic relations and limited demand for international travel.
Moreover, the new US rules will affect not only Russians. According to the Duke University Global Center for Health Innovation, approximately 448 million doses of Sputnik V have been procured worldwide. And many of these vaccines have been shipped to low-income countries. Some governments have complained about slow shipments from Russia. The limited options for travel are likely to spark further criticism of the Russian drug.